Young guns - Jack Buchanan
2013 NRL games: 20
Earning his NRL debut in Round 1 against Newcastle may have surprised a few Wests Tigers fans, but throughout the 2013 season Jack Buchanan has justified Mick Potters selection with solid performances.
The rookie prop was amongst just two Wests Tigers players to have played every game this season, before being rested in Monday nights clash with the Roosters. That alone is an amazing effort from the promising forward, especially when you consider experienced campaigner Adam Blair is the other player.
With injuries amongst the Wests Tigers stock of props throughout the year, including representative stars Keith Galloway and Aaron Woods, Buchanan has taken full advantage of the opportunity presented to him.
Buchanans ability to play big minutes will prove its worth in years to come as excitement builds amongst Wests Tigers supporters.
- Averages 11 runs for 79 metres per game
- Averages 12 support runs per game - most in the Wests Tigers middle (helps take defenders off teammates when they run the ball)
- Averages 26 tackles per game
MICK POTTER SAYS
Jack was a really good player in the Under 20s last year for the Dragons, he came across with a high work rate, he was a good solid defender and would take the first carry all the time. You could see that he was a player that was very willing, he played a lot of minutes in the 20s.
When Jack came across here, he really was a big kid that was still a bit skinny. Getting some weight on him was key. Underneath his frame he could just keep running and running, we didnt need him to do that. He didnt need to be a half-marathon runner we needed him to be a Rugby League player. We were fortunate enough to pull him out of some of the endurance stuff and gets some beef on him. He put on about four kilograms in pre-season and that hasnt slowed him down at all. He is a player that can play a lot of minutes still.
This pre-season coming up he can certainly develop his frame for another year. He is probably going to have to work on his power, to provide a bit more impact on the line, bend it back a bit. Tackle-wise he has been improving, thats something we will constantly work on. For him trying to tackle players like Sam Burgess and Sam Kasiano he needs to match them for weight and he is slowly getting there. He probably wont be fully developed for three more years but he is certainly one to keep your eye on.
Ive been surprised at how much hes endured this season, I would have thought at the start of the year he would have played half a dozen games off the bench. He possibly would have been happy with that but as it stands he has nearly played every game for us. He has done an excellent job considering his size and how immature he is for a front rower as far as being fully developed. The best years for Jack Buchanan are yet to come and his work ethic is second to none, I cant fault him.
When we kicked off the season we had a few front-rower out injured and he put his hand up and got his spot, for him it was great. He deserved it for all the hard work he put in during the off-season. You take your opportunities and he certainly took his. He has exceeded all expectations for this season.
READ PART 1: DAVID NOFOALUMA
READ PART 2: SAUASO SUE
READ PART 3: AVA SEUMANUFAGAI
READ PART 4: JAMES TEDESCO
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